Happy Spring, the season of new life!
Spring is associated with birth and babies and vibrancy, and while new life is certainly a celebration, there’s no doubt that bringing a baby into the world doesn’t look anything like a meadow of flowers and sunshine – it looks more like segments of insufficient sleep and tiny clothes making the biggest piles of laundry. Parenthood is wonderful. And parenthood is hard.
Not even 2 weeks postpartum, W, a single mom, came bouncing into the center to say ‘hi’ and show off her little one. W and her baby were the center of attention, surrounded by the love of clients and staff. Mothers themselves, many of them knew the challenges of motherhood. ‘We have a postpartum support group, W. You should come,’ said a staff member. W’s response was one of relief. ‘That’s exactly what I need – I didn’t expect parenting to be so hard! Sometimes I feel like I’m all alone.’
At Hope Women’s Center, we recognize the myths of motherhood and we know how to support moms like W who are questioning their strength and abilities in their new season. The baby blues affect at least half of new moms, but 1 in 7 moms are affected by more severe depression or mood disorders after giving birth. Women’s Health Innovations (WHI) is the only licensed behavioral health agency in Arizona that specializes in Maternal Mental Health – and they’ve partnered with Hope Women’s Center!
WHI is teaching ‘Our Family Fabric’ weekly at our Phoenix center, with plans to teach it at our Apache Junction center in the next few months. ‘Our Family Fabric’ is a faith based study that encourages women to look at the “threads” of who they are – both good and not so good. What threads are strong and what threads need replaced? Women find their individual answers in a support group setting where vulnerability and authenticity are protected and practical tools for navigating the stressors of motherhood are practiced.
We want to walk with women at every stage of parenting, that’s why we offer free pregnancy testing, prenatal classes, parenting classes, baby items in the resource room, and now with the help of Women’s Health Innovations, support groups for moms who feel overwhelmed. ‘Our Family Fabric’ is an exciting partnership as we encourage, engage, and equip mothers with holistic support.